Energy Efficiency Upgrades

Episode 597 March 23, 2023 01:07:18
Energy Efficiency Upgrades
The Weekend Warriors Home Improvement Show
Energy Efficiency Upgrades

Mar 23 2023 | 01:07:18


Hosted By

Tony Cookston Corey Valdez

Show Notes

Tony and Corey talk about some projects around your house that will help save energy.  They also dive into some things to consider if you're building or buying a NEW home.

View Full Transcript

Episode Transcript

Speaker 1 00:00:04 Welcome to the Weekend, warriors Home Improvement Show, built by Par Lumber when it comes to big or small projects around the home. Tony and Corey, you've got the know-how and the answers to make your life just a bit easier. Here they are. Your weekend Warriors, Tony and Corey. Speaker 2 00:00:23 Hey, welcome to the Weekend, warriors Home Improvement Show podcast. I'm Corey Valdez. Speaker 3 00:00:28 And I'm Tony Crookston. Speaker 2 00:00:29 Thanks for, uh, tuning in with us today. You know, I can't get over saying tuning in. You know, we were on the radio for 10 years. Yeah, Speaker 3 00:00:36 Yeah. And Speaker 2 00:00:36 Now we're focusing just on the podcast. So if you're finding us, thank you so much. Uh, anyway, we're, uh, we're in the studio today and we're talking about energy efficiency. Speaker 3 00:00:47 <laugh> tuning in is funny. I know, because if you tuning in, when you say tuning in, you imagine the little dial dial Yeah. Right. And the orange line and it's, and you're trying to find that spot between static and it's kind Speaker 2 00:01:00 Of Yeah. It's kind of like when you say roll up the window. Right, right. <laugh>, you know, you roll up the window. Speaker 3 00:01:05 Right. Well, we did when we were kids. Absolutely. That's because we are old <laugh>. And we remember cars that had windows that rolled up and radios that had to be tuned, Speaker 2 00:01:14 Like, uh, energy efficiency to us was put on a sweater when it's cold outside. That's Speaker 3 00:01:19 Right. That's right. That was energy ef No energy efficiency was close the door behind you right? In my house. Speaker 2 00:01:25 The lights. Yeah. Speaker 3 00:01:27 Actually, my dad would say, we're not trying to heat the entire neighborhood. Son. Close the door. Born in a barn. <laugh>. You born in a barn, <laugh>. Yeah. It's, uh, it's funny about energy efficiency and, um, and the different levels of it that is available to us, but I think what we're gonna talk about today is being able to use less energy to do the things you're doing now to spend less money and not even notice it. Speaker 2 00:01:55 Right. Right. And the, the probably the biggest thing is comfortability. You wanna make your home as comfortable as possible without spending out the nose to keep it warm during the winter or keep it cool during the summer. You want it to be comfortable. And sometimes that is putting on a sweater, but there's lots of things you can do to the home you own. And there's lots of things you can do if you're thinking about building a new home. So that's what we're gonna talk about today. Speaker 3 00:02:21 Yeah, that's great. I, this is a good topic. Lots of really good nuggets in here. Things you can implement right away and things that you, that might take some planning and some things that might cost money up front, but will save you Speaker 2 00:02:34 In the long Speaker 3 00:02:35 Run. Yeah. In the long Speaker 2 00:02:36 Run. Absolutely. Alright, so let's talk about all of the different things that you could do to your current home. If you have a home that was built in the last, you know, a hundred years Right. Versus something that's probably less than 20 years old. Right. It's probably pretty inefficient. My home personally was built in the seventies and there were so many problems with my house. House. I didn't have any insulation in my crawl space. I had ver, I had like two inches of insulation in my attic. Speaker 3 00:03:06 You know, it's so funny when you talk about your house in particular, and we do that a lot because we have an intimate relationship with the construction of your house, <laugh>. And I'll tell you what, why, why that is. It was built the way it was built and, and it was efficient for, for its time. But then it went through a remodel. And when your house went through a remodel, it was now subject to the level of understanding of the person who did the work and whether or not they were following through with all the things that they were supposed to do. Right. And the quality of the materials that they used. Right. Which all of those were question a factor, highly questionable in your remodel, so you just said you had less than two inches of insulation in some areas, but you had more than 96 inches of insulation in some other areas. It was so funny. We opened up this room, I'm slamming my thing. <laugh>. Uh, we opened, you were loud. We opened up this room above the family room and found piles of unused insulation Right. Stacked up in that room. Like he had plans for it, but he didn't use it. Speaker 2 00:04:15 <laugh>. Yes. I remember that. This house that I sta that I live in now has become leaps and bounds. So let's talk about some of the things that we did in, honestly, like number number one thing you can do for your home is upgrade your insulation. You know, insulating your attic, insulating your walls in some cases, if it doesn't have wall insulation, upgrading your floor insulation. That'll help you reduce the amount of heat loss and heat gain in the summer. Definitely comfortability. That's number one. No Speaker 3 00:04:51 Question. Speaker 2 00:04:53 What's the next thing on the list? Tony <laugh> <laugh>. Speaker 3 00:04:57 Um, ceiling air leaks around doors and windows and outlets and light fixtures in the ceiling around the baseboards and the walls. Um, the, if your home is older, it is likely susceptible to cold air coming in from the outside, or warm or cold air from the inside, getting outside depending on what, uh, season it is. Right. And ceiling around those, we'll call them orifices. Right. Which are places where electrical comes out and some Speaker 2 00:05:27 Orifices or fenestrations. Speaker 3 00:05:29 Okay. Well you can call it a fe Speaker 2 00:05:30 You love feister. You use that word all the time. Speaker 3 00:05:33 I do. When I'm referring to windows and doors, usually Speaker 2 00:05:35 Fenestrations. Speaker 3 00:05:36 Um, but, uh, outlets and light fixtures and all those things, any of those holes in the wall or in the ceiling, you can use expanding foam around those areas to keep that, um, cold or warm air from passing through from your conditioned space to an unconditioned space. Speaker 2 00:05:55 Yeah. So I, I set upgrade your insulation, but probably the number one thing is air ceiling. If you're gonna put new insulation in your attic, you should probably take the time to air seal all of the, you know, the holes that go from your attic down into your main home. And like you said, take a can of spray foam, walk around, you know, dig out the insulation that's already there, foam it up, and then when you add insulation on top of that, you're going to increase that, that r value because insulation is very good at one thing. Insulating <laugh>. It is not good at filtering at at air ceiling. Oh, at air sealing Speaker 3 00:06:31 <laugh>. Yeah. It's a filter too. It's good at two things, a Speaker 2 00:06:34 Hundred percent. We, and we've talked about this before, if you've ever torn trim off an old window and they stuffed that yellow insulation in the sides, and then you go to pull it out and it's black, that's because it has over the years, air is just leaking through there and it's just capturing all of that dirt, oddly enough. So That's right. That's one thing. It is not good at Speaker 3 00:06:57 <laugh>. Speaker 2 00:06:58 Um, the next thing on the list is to use energy efficient lighting. If you haven't already go, uh, go replace all your incandescent lights with l e d, they're much more energy efficient and they last a heck of a lot longer. Speaker 3 00:07:12 That also means replacing your halogen, which seems like a energy efficient light compared to incandescent, Speaker 2 00:07:22 But until you go to touch it when it's on, Speaker 3 00:07:24 But you really don't, you really don't want those either. Speaker 2 00:07:27 Yeah. Halogen bulbs are woo. Speaker 3 00:07:29 Yeah. You want to be replacing those with, uh, with l e d bulbs as well. Yeah. Speaker 2 00:07:35 They, and they make everything Speaker 3 00:07:36 Now what days they make lights that look, I mean, they make an l e d light in every scenario. The little candle lights or the big lights, flood lights, Speaker 2 00:07:45 Edison bulbs. Speaker 3 00:07:46 Oh, you name it. They got l e d everything. So there's, you're not compromising. Um, they cost a little bit more money, but they last a lot longer. Speaker 2 00:07:54 Absolutely. Speaker 3 00:07:55 And they're better. Speaker 2 00:07:56 Absolutely. All right. Next thing on the list is to upgrade your H V A C system. If it's more than 10 years old, it's probably inefficient now and not necessarily have to replace it if it's 10 years old, but you'll know if you go out and it's just not putting out the heat or it's not putting out the cold that it used to, you know that it's inefficient and it's time to replace it. You wanna look for a unit that has a high S E E R or a sear rating, which is seasonal energy efficiency ratio. And that'll save you tons of energy and money. But to go along with that, when you're getting a new furnace, you wanna put in a programmable thermostat. If you don't, if you got one of those old ones that you flick the little knob, you know, back and forth and Yeah. And it's just, it's, that's called a dumb thermostat cuz it gets below that temperature turns on Speaker 3 00:08:45 Like in my travel trailer, Speaker 2 00:08:46 Right? Yeah, exactly. Speaker 3 00:08:48 Yeah. Um, you, you can replace your thermostat with a programmable thermostat Speaker 2 00:08:55 At any time, Speaker 3 00:08:55 Whether you're getting a new furnace or not. You wouldn't want to get a new furnace and not get a smart thermostat. Um, but even if your thermos is gonna be with you for a bit longer, a a programmable thermostat can save you a lot of money. Speaker 2 00:09:07 I will say there is a difference between a programmable thermostat and a smart thermostat. I actually have a smart thermostat, and I'm gonna be honest, this might be controversial. I'm not impressed with it. Speaker 3 00:09:22 What, Speaker 2 00:09:23 Yeah. Speaker 3 00:09:23 Is it like a, a, a specific name brand Like a Nest? Speaker 2 00:09:27 Yeah, something like that. Something like that. I wanna say the brand so much, but one thing that I will say, when I had my programmable thermostat, I could tell it, Hey, between the hours of 9:00 PM and 7:00 AM I wanted at 63 degrees in my house, so the heat would not turn on at all at night. And then during the day, you know, I know that between 7:00 AM and 9:00 AM we're home. We're getting the kids ready to off to school, and then we leave for work. So then from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM I would say turn it back down low. And then I would have it programmed, you know, I knew my schedule for every day and I could set it. Well, the new smart thermostats, they use sensors that can tell if you're home or not. Speaker 3 00:10:15 Oh. Speaker 2 00:10:16 And it, I honestly, Speaker 3 00:10:19 It took over and was making its own decisions. Speaker 2 00:10:21 It kind of does. Speaker 3 00:10:22 It decided that you didn't know best. It knew best. Speaker 2 00:10:25 So essentially, essentially to control. And there's some weird stuff going out there. And I don't know, it's Speaker 3 00:10:29 Very iRobot ish. I'm Speaker 2 00:10:30 Just saying, I don't know if you've heard about this, but there was a situation that went down in, I believe Colorado, maybe two summers ago. It was really hot and all of these people had these smart thermostats hooked up to their system and the energy company sent out like a command that turned off everyone's ac Speaker 3 00:10:53 What? Speaker 2 00:10:54 Or it locked, it basically locked them out so they couldn't turn their AC on, they couldn't turn the temperature down in their homes to pump the ac Wow. Because it was, they were having it kind of an energy crisis, which I don't know how you wanna look at that. It's smart, right? It's a probably a good thing, but do you really want someone else determining, determining what your temperature of your home should be? Speaker 3 00:11:19 Look, here's what I'm gonna say about that. If they have the ability to turn the gas off to everyone's homes and one home is on fire and they go in and turn the gas off remotely to keep the house from burning down, that's a good idea. Sure. Beyond that, I'm disagreeing with it entirely. Speaker 2 00:11:38 Yeah. Anyway, it's, it's probably gonna be controversial in my opinion. Uh, there's people that Speaker 3 00:11:43 Are, this is not a political show. Speaker 2 00:11:45 They were very upset <laugh> that, that they were sweating in their own homes and they have AC right outside. They couldn't turn it on. Speaker 3 00:11:52 Wow. Speaker 2 00:11:53 So Speaker 3 00:11:54 Interesting. Speaker 2 00:11:54 Interesting. Take that for what it's worth, I may in the near future replace my smart thermostat with the old programmable thermostat. Speaker 3 00:12:05 Interesting. Very interesting. Speaker 2 00:12:06 Yeah. So anyway, Speaker 3 00:12:07 Uh, the next one on here, Corey, that is on the list, is install low flow fixtures. Now we're talking about water now. And uh, this is an area where I can actually benefit from this information. I have toilets in my three bathrooms in my Speaker 2 00:12:22 House. Well, that's a good thing. Speaker 3 00:12:23 Yes. <laugh>. That that was good. Um, the bro the problem with that is they're not low flow toilets. I mean, those things are moving like probably four or five gallons Speaker 2 00:12:35 Of flush, Speaker 3 00:12:36 Uh, per flush. Speaker 2 00:12:37 Remember the old toilets that were like eight gallons of flush? Yeah. I swear. Speaker 3 00:12:41 Yeah, these are, but mine are using a lot and, and it's a big toilet. You know, I feel like it's big compared to some of the ones that I see. Um, but it's definitely using a lot. You know, here's the thing, when you flush the toilet and you can count to like 15 before it's all the water is out of the bowl, there's a lot of Speaker 2 00:12:58 Water in there. Oh yeah. I think my toilets, when we remodeled our bathrooms, we put in a a, a high efficiency toilet. For one, it uses a lot less water, but for two it uses like a power flush. Speaker 3 00:13:13 Yeah. Speaker 2 00:13:13 So that's what I need. Don't it incorporates air somehow and it, you know, gets rid of the water and the bowl like quick. Yeah. And then it refills in seconds. Speaker 3 00:13:22 Yeah. That's what I need. I need a, I need a power flush. Speaker 2 00:13:26 Yeah. And you know, this is also controversial. You know, the low flow shower heads, low flow faucets, you know, I'm down with the low flow faucets. Honestly, when you're washing your hands, uh, but a shower head oof, man, I don't know. Well Speaker 3 00:13:41 It look, if you have one shower head that is not low flow and you are gonna decide you want to go low flow, you just need to get four, put one in every corner of the shower. <laugh>. And so that's, that's four times the low flow that gets you back to where you were Speaker 2 00:13:57 Before <laugh>. Right? Right. Okay. Speaker 3 00:13:58 Before you low flow. I see. See where you're going. You know, I had to, um, I had to go out to the water main at my house a few years ago and we had to dial back the pressure that was coming to my house. Speaker 2 00:14:12 So I'm gonna give you, I'm gonna give you a tip here. Yeah. Because what you did was by turning that down is you did not reduce the pressure coming into your home. You reduced the water volume coming into your home. If you wanna reduce the pressure, you need to install what's called a P R V valve. That's a PR pressure reducing valve. So it's just a P R V, not a pressure reducing valve valve <laugh>. But, uh, I had the same problem in my first house that I bought. The pressure coming into the house was like 130 psi. And the problem is when you have really high water pressure, it's hard on your dishwasher. It's hard on your washing machine. It's hard on your refrigerator. Yeah. Your toilet valves. Yeah. Everything that turns on and off. And sometimes you'll hear it in your, in your, uh, washing machine, the water will turn on and you'll hear it turn off and it goes, you hear a hard stop Right. Speaker 2 00:15:06 Funk. Yeah. You probably have too high of water pressure. And there's ways you can test it. You can, you can buy water pressure testing, um, thing that you turn onto your hose bib and then you turn it on and it tells you what your water pressure is. Interesting Kate. And you want it to be typically, I think it's 85 psi. I'm, don't quote me on that, but it's, yeah, it's some range in that you would want to be within. And if it's higher than that, you need a PRV installed. I had a plumber come out and do it for me. And I told him, I said, can't we just turn the water down at the thing? And he says, no, you're just reducing the volume. But when the pressure builds up at your appliances and whatnot, it's still gonna be the same high Speaker 3 00:15:55 Pressure. Interesting. Speaker 2 00:15:56 So for you, I'd recommend getting a prv. They're cheap. Yeah. Very interesting. They're may be 200 bucks and you install it, have to hire the plumber. You install it Speaker 3 00:16:03 At the, at the Speaker 2 00:16:04 Well no city line. You well, you do, you install it inside your home. So you, you, you have a really big crawl space at your house. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Well, you could prob you probably know where the water comes in. Oh, sure. And that's where they tee it. They, they, I see. Put it Speaker 3 00:16:17 Right there. I see. Okay. Speaker 2 00:16:19 So Speaker 3 00:16:20 Interesting. Yeah. That's, uh, I did not know that difference between the volume and pressure. That's interesting. Speaker 2 00:16:25 Yeah. Um, lucky for you. I know a good plumber. Speaker 3 00:16:28 Yes, I know the guy. Kp. Good Speaker 2 00:16:30 Fella. You know, kp. Anyway, uh, next one on the list is to plant trees and shrubs around your home. Uh, if we all know trees offer really nice shade. They also offer a nice wind block. So if you've got nice shrubbery and trees around your house, you're gonna get a nice shaded area in the summer. And then in the wintertime, it's gonna block some of that really cold wind that will make it inside your home. Speaker 3 00:16:57 You'll probably want to make plans ahead of time and plant the tree that you want to offer shade 10 years before you need it. <laugh>. Cause it takes a while for 'em to grow up. Or it does. You find yourself buying a full sized tree? Speaker 2 00:17:09 Well, you know, honestly, I bought some trees, some, some evergreen type trees. Yeah. I can't recall the name of 'em, but I planted them in my backyard. I mean, you seen 'em. Oh, Speaker 3 00:17:20 Those things went Speaker 2 00:17:20 Up fast. They went up. They did. Yeah. Speaker 3 00:17:22 Probably. And they're enormous now. Speaker 2 00:17:23 Four years. They were 25 feet tall. Speaker 3 00:17:25 I did the same thing kind of. I planted bamboo in the back. That's, that's right. And the bamboo also grew up very fast and a nightmare created a, a screen, but we were careful. We we planted 'em inside of, um, containers. Yeah. So that they wouldn't get too crazy. Speaker 2 00:17:41 <laugh>. All right. Next one on the list, uh, is to upgrade your appliances. If you have appliances that aren't energy star certified, you want want to go out and look for those. You know, and it, this is kind of controversial, you know, do you want to just go out and buy all new appliances just for the sake of buying new appliances and throw the old ones out? Uh, I would say that if it's time to replace your appliances, then on, by all means go out and replace it. But look for an energy efficient option. Speaker 3 00:18:09 Well, think about this too. If you are going to be in replacing your appliances with something more energy efficient, there are people out there that could use appliances that work. You could donate your appliance appliances to Habitat for Humanity Restore, and they would make those appliances available to someone who doesn't have true that available to them for a very, very reasonable price. And then they use the money that they get from those sales to build, to build homes for people who can't afford That's right. Homes otherwise. So it is a great, great, um, is a program, program. I don't wanna call it a charity. I mean, it really kind of is, but it's a great program. Speaker 2 00:18:48 Habitat for Humanity is not a charity. Speaker 3 00:18:50 It really knows how to utilize, um, donated money. Speaker 2 00:18:54 Yeah. They give a hand up, not a handout. Speaker 3 00:18:57 That's right. A hand up. I'll Speaker 2 00:18:58 Tell you that. All right. Last one on the list. And this one is kind of ridiculous, uh, but instead of using a dryer clothes dryer, use a clothes line, Hey, you Speaker 3 00:19:07 Know, I, I know a lot of people that still use, Speaker 2 00:19:09 Take it back to the fifties. Speaker 3 00:19:10 Yeah. And I know a lot of people that still use a clothes line. There are a lot of people, Corey, believe it or not, that don't like to have their clothes dried in a dryer. Speaker 2 00:19:20 Interesting. Speaker 3 00:19:21 Well, I mean, you know, a dryer, believe it or not, takes a toll on your clothes. Oh yeah. And your clothes don't last as long. Um, if they're being dried in a dryer, it's just good point. It's just the, the natural facts of it. So a lot of people still do that. I, I don't think that's farfetched. It could be a stretch for someone who's not into that sort of thing, but, um, but it is a good option if you're looking to save some green. Speaker 2 00:19:47 Good point. Gr you save some green to make some green. Speaker 3 00:19:50 That's right. Save some green. To make some green. Speaker 2 00:19:52 Alright. So now let's talk about some, some things that if you should consider, if you're building new, if you're going out and you're buying a new home, or you are hiring a contractor or a home builder to build yourself a new home. Or if you're a contractor listening to the show and you want to be a better builder, these are some things that you really need to consider when you're trying to become as energy efficient as possible. Not just code minimum. You know, the codes keep getting tighter and tighter and tighter. And a good friend of mine always says, building to code is the worst house that you can build without getting in trouble. Speaker 3 00:20:27 That's absolutely true. I love that saying too. Yeah. Speaker 2 00:20:31 Really good. And I mean, not that builders are building terrible homes, but a lot of builders aren't looking to make the home the most efficient. They're making it, they're building it to make the most profit, which they need to. Right. But there are a lot of things that you can incorporate into home homes that will give you more profit in the end. So anyway, the first one on the list that we wrote down is the building envelope. You know, it all starts with insulating an air ceiling. Right. And air ceiling starts at your building envelope. You know, Tony and I, we recommend using Tyvec products. They make a very good weather resistant barrier. That's what you wrap the external of your home with. And what the biggest thing that does is prevent air infiltration into the home. So you wrap it, it's like a, you've seen it, it's got that crinkle wrap. It offers a drainability of any moisture that gets stuck in there. But that's where it starts, is with the building envelope. Speaker 3 00:21:34 Yeah. And, and it's not just, uh, you know, one product. There's a lot of products that Tyvek makes that work together in unison to do one, to do one job. And, um, it's important in my opinion, to make sure that you are using the right accessory products. Right. When you're using, um, you're using the, the vapor barrier and you want to use the Tyvec tape, you want to use the tyvec flashing, you want to use the, the flexible tyvec flashing. Um, it's just important. And, and also if you are having to use some, some sealant, you know, that comes from a tube. Now that product also made by Speaker 2 00:22:14 Tyvec. So Yeah. The thing about Tyvec that makes it work so well is you think about the, the extra exterior of your home. You built this really amazing house and then you filled it with holes, right? Cuz you want windows, you want doors. Well, every time you add a hole to the side of your home, you're adding in a potential for air leaks. Yeah. And water leaks. Right. So if you don't use the right products and you don't install it properly, and you know, you don't air seal around with using foam and caulking and the tapes and all that stuff, you're asking for trouble. Right? So Tyvec is an amazing system. It has an amazing warranty, and they have everything to back it up with between installation methods and, um, training. They will come out and train your builders how to install it properly. So that's the way to go, in my opinion. So Speaker 3 00:23:07 You build the walls and then you cut a bunch of holes in 'em, and then you wrap the thing with, with this vapor barrier. And then in the holes, you put windows, you Speaker 2 00:23:17 Stick windows Speaker 3 00:23:18 In there, and if you don't use a good quality window, then you are setting yourself up for higher energy bills. Right. Going forward. Right. Speaker 2 00:23:28 What you want is a high performance window with a low U value. U value is like the, it's the opposite of our value. You know, we kind of know what our value means when, when people say our value high our value. Right. You think that's insulation. It's it's resistive qualities. Speaker 3 00:23:48 Yeah. The higher the number, the better it is. Right? That's R 21. R 40, yeah. R 72. Speaker 2 00:23:53 The more you got, the more you're insulated. Right. But with windows, you're kind of limited. Right. You have two panes of glass or three panes of glass and that's it. Right. That's all you get. So, Speaker 3 00:24:05 And you can strategically put coatings right. On those pains that work together to, to reflect the, the ultraviolet race. Right. And, but allow the light Speaker 2 00:24:19 In. Right. So low encodings are one, they also do insulated frames. Uh, they even make 'em with gas filled chambers between the gas glass panes that offer a higher U value. Or I'm sorry, do you lower U value? Just Speaker 3 00:24:36 Gimme one example of a reason why you want to keep the ultraviolet rays out. Speaker 2 00:24:40 Why? So solar heat gain as a window, the ultraviolet light's passing through that window and it's causing the interior of your home to heat up. Speaker 3 00:24:53 That's right. Speaker 2 00:24:54 That's right. So in the, in the wintertime sometimes that's great, but in the summertime that's bad. Right. You want to reduce the amount of solar heat gain coming into your home. Speaker 3 00:25:05 Yeah. Ultraviolet light ultraviolet rays also have a tendency to take a toll on your internal furnishings can, it can change the color of your couch in the one spot where it gets, you know, a lot of ultraviolet light coming through Speaker 2 00:25:20 There. I have a funny story about, Speaker 3 00:25:22 But if you butt, if you sit in front of the window with your mouth open <laugh>, it will whiten your teeth. <laugh> it takes years and years, but Speaker 2 00:25:30 Years Speaker 3 00:25:30 And years. But you know, you can do it. It works. Speaker 2 00:25:33 <laugh>. Uh, one time I was walking on the beach, we were in Cannon Beach and we're walking down the beach in the, it was sunny out and you see all these beautiful homes up on the bluff on the ridge. And at one point you're walking along and all of a sudden you just get blasted with like this death ray of heat. Oh yeah. And I was like, what in the world Speaker 3 00:25:55 <laugh>? Yeah. Speaker 2 00:25:56 And honestly, it was ref, it was the low e coatings on the windows that were reflecting the heat down onto the beach. It was unreal. Speaker 3 00:26:08 Concentrated. It Speaker 2 00:26:09 Was literally like a death ray. Yeah. So <laugh>, that's how well it Speaker 3 00:26:14 Works. Yeah. Yeah. Anyway. Crazy. It's Speaker 2 00:26:16 Funny. All right. Next one on the list is to, you know, think about the outside landscaping you want to install or, or you wanna plant plants that are native to your area. That way you can reduce the amount of water that you're throwing down on it just to keep 'em alive. It always cracks me up when I see palm trees. Yeah. <laugh> people are gonna be mad cause people love palm trees. That's the opposite Speaker 3 00:26:39 That I, Speaker 2 00:26:39 In Oregon trees too, in Oregon, palm trees in Oregon. Speaker 3 00:26:43 It's just weird. No, I like palm trees too. I think it brings a whole new look. But the thing is, it's not, um, it's not the inexpensive way to go. What we're talking about is reducing your energy bills. Right. Right. And being more efficient and building sort of in a responsible way, using less water, using less power, all of those Speaker 2 00:27:05 Things. What do you think's gonna use less water? A fern that's, that's native to Oregon or a palm tree. It's just, you know what Speaker 3 00:27:14 I mean? Yeah. It, it seems weird to me. Um, because it feels like palm trees probably don't get a lot of water <laugh>. Um, anyways, it's of a desert tree. Right. Or like a, um, a tropical tree. I I guess there's a lot of rainfall in tropical areas. Um, I don't, I don't get the science of it. I'm just saying <laugh>, we're not telling you not to have a palm tree if you want a palm tree. We're just saying it's not the, it's not the efficient way to Speaker 2 00:27:40 Go. Right. If you're trying to save as much water as possible, you wanna use native plants. Speaker 3 00:27:44 Right. Native plants. Speaker 2 00:27:44 Simple as That's a Speaker 3 00:27:45 Good, it's a good, it's a good point. Speaker 2 00:27:46 All right. Next one on the list is to try and use recycled or salvaged materials when possible. Speaker 3 00:27:52 Now I'll tell you who got this right. The guy that remodeled your house, <laugh>. That was the guy that recycled. Speaker 2 00:28:00 Well, no, we didn't get it right. He used recycled and salvage materials, but not when possible. No. <laugh>. He just used them Speaker 3 00:28:07 <laugh>. I know, I know. I, I'll tell you what, one of the things that I'll never, ever forget about Speaker 2 00:28:12 Is that stitch together beam and post <laugh>. Holy moly. Speaker 3 00:28:17 Some of the things that we saw when we started pulling sheet rock off of the walls in your house astounded me. Speaker 2 00:28:23 The beam that held up the entire second floor of my home was pieced together. Wood. Yeah. It was of different widths in, in just crazy. It was all bolted together. Speaker 3 00:28:36 We pulled up Speaker 2 00:28:37 The floor of Speaker 3 00:28:38 Frankenstein in the kitchen and there was at least four different kinds of subfloor <laugh> that was, that was down was awful. It was a very, it was very, Speaker 2 00:28:47 I am indebted to you for the rest of my life for helping me with that disaster. It's Speaker 3 00:28:51 Very awful. <laugh>. It's not like that anymore. It's great. Now <laugh>. But we, we saw some stuff. We learned some stuff. Speaker 2 00:28:56 Yeah. Speaker 3 00:28:57 Absolutely. If it fueled hundreds of episodes of this show, <laugh> Speaker 2 00:29:02 Got a lot of content. Yeah. All right. Uh, next one is to design your home, kind of using passive solar design principles. If you've never heard of passive house, that's kind of an extreme, uh, way to take this. It's a whole design method to, you know, use solar heat gain to your benefit by putting thermal mass inside your home using concrete Yeah. Or things like that in the way that you position your home on your lot, the trees. It takes everything into consideration to make your home as energy efficient as possible. I, I think a passive house is amazing, Speaker 3 00:29:39 Very intriguing, Speaker 2 00:29:41 Tony. And I don't know much about it, so we're not gonna talk about it Yeah. That much. Speaker 3 00:29:45 But if you want an interesting read, Google Speaker 2 00:29:47 It. Yeah. Passive Speaker 3 00:29:48 House. There is a lot to take in. There's a lot of information, Speaker 2 00:29:52 But there are things to consider in that realm when you're building a new home. Sure. For instance, southern facing windows. Right. You know, if you're building a house and you've got all your windows facing south, it's gonna be hotter than Hades in the summertime. So you just need to consider that. And sometimes you can design roof overhangs that come out that block the sun during the high summer months. And when the sun's lower in the wintertime, you know, you want to accept that heat into your home. So there's just little things like that. And it'd be worth asking your architect about it. Yeah. So that you can reduce the amount of energy that you're putting in to keep it warm and cold. Speaker 3 00:30:36 Yeah. And you know, some of the other things that, that you could do with that in mind, especially with today's technology, maybe you have blinds or drapes that can be, um, set to a timer and you are maximizing the sun in the morning and then closing those drapes in the afternoon. You know, smart Speaker 2 00:30:56 Technology. Speaker 3 00:30:56 Yeah. Smart technology can go a long way. Speaker 2 00:30:59 I actually have another story real quick about the, uh, low e coatings on windows in the back of my house. You know, in my living room, we have a full bank of windows that faces south. And during the summer months that sun hits those windows. And right underneath those windows, my wife has planted like a bulb garden. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So lots of little like iris and, you know, beautiful flowers that come up and in the hottest parts of the or or when the sun is at its peak during the middle of the summer, all of that stuff gets baked Absolutely baked. And all of the grass, the about probably 10 feet out from those windows turns Speaker 3 00:31:43 Brown. Speaker 2 00:31:44 Turns completely brown. Yeah. Because it's the heat bouncing off of those windows. Yeah. So I've actually considered, I want to buy one of those covers. You know, those, those window covers that come down electronically? Yeah. They have 'em with little solar motors. Like a shade. Yeah. It's like a shade sunshade. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> that covers that whole bank of windows. That's a good idea. I think I'm gonna do that probably this year. Speaker 3 00:32:07 Yeah, that's a really good idea. That could really save you on your air conditioning Speaker 2 00:32:11 Costs. Oh, a hundred percent. And those are by far the biggest windows of my house too. Speaker 3 00:32:15 And protect your bulbs as well. Mm-hmm. Speaker 2 00:32:17 <affirmative>. Speaker 3 00:32:18 Well, you want those bulbs to grow up to Speaker 2 00:32:20 Be LEDs. <laugh>. Speaker 3 00:32:22 Yeah. LEDs. I was gonna say salad bowls. Speaker 2 00:32:25 That was stupid. Speaker 3 00:32:27 <laugh>. Yeah. <laugh>. Speaker 2 00:32:28 All right. Next one on the list is, uh, you know, consider incorporating sustainable building materials. Hey, Speaker 3 00:32:33 Sustainable building materials. Speaker 2 00:32:35 There's a lot too, you know, there, there are products out there that range from, you know, bamboo, bamboo flooring. There's tons of bamboo flooring. Speaker 3 00:32:43 Bamboo decking. Speaker 2 00:32:44 Yep. Bamboo decking. Speaker 3 00:32:45 There's big, there's bamboo. Lots Speaker 2 00:32:46 Of stuff. Yep. Consider using steel on your home. A lot of roofing materials you can buy steel metal roofing. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> that has been recycled. Um, so that's something to keep in mind. There's, here's a weird one. Straw bales. Yeah. Have you, I've never seen one personally, a home built with straw bales, but I know a Speaker 3 00:33:07 Guy. No, I know a pig <laugh> that had a house built out of Speaker 2 00:33:11 Straw and it blew down <laugh>. Well, but it's actually a thing. I mean, people will build homes out of straw and then obviously they clad it correctly and then Sure, sure. Frame it out on the side. Wow. Interesting. Interesting. So your walls are literally two feet thick. Um, but I know somebody that really researched this and they wanted to do it, you know. Wow. I'll tell you about after episode. Speaker 3 00:33:31 Wow. Wow. Speaker 2 00:33:32 Interesting. Um, cork, that's another material that I'm seeing more and more of used on flooring and wall tiles. It's a, a renewable resource. Recycled glass. Have you seen recycled glass countertops? Speaker 3 00:33:47 I have not. No. Speaker 2 00:33:48 They look amazing. Really? I mean, honestly, they look very similar to quartz. Something that you would get quartz countertop wise, you probably would not be able to tell the difference between glass. Speaker 3 00:33:59 Seems like it would be a little fragile for a countertop Speaker 2 00:34:02 <laugh>. Now they add tons of resin and epoxy and, and they're not, they're all, they're amazing. Speaker 3 00:34:06 I'll tell you what, I've seen concrete countertops though. Poured concrete countertops. Speaker 2 00:34:11 Yes. But did you know that concrete? That's pretty cool. Thing is concrete is like one of the worst things for the environment. Speaker 3 00:34:18 What makes you Speaker 2 00:34:19 Say not pouring it? Of course, but the manufacturing process of concrete is terrible for the environment. Speaker 3 00:34:27 Hmm. Interesting. No, I would not have known that. Yeah. Speaker 2 00:34:30 Um, they say that it causes the most greenhouse gas, concrete Speaker 3 00:34:35 Greenhouse gas. That's what they say. I, they would say they would be competing with the greenhouse gas that's made at your house. Speaker 2 00:34:43 <laugh> only when you are over <laugh>. Uh, next one on the list is, you know, salvaged wood. Yep. That's a good one. If you have, uh, the means to get salvaged wood and use it incorporated into your home, I would say to not use salvage wood for structural. Sure, sure. Purposes. Yeah. I've actually had had over the years, people come to me and ask me if they can use, say, say a tree fell in their yard. They say, Hey, I'm gonna have a guy come out and mill this down for me into a six by 12 or whatever. Right. And they want to use it in their home. Speaker 3 00:35:18 Yeah. Because the tree was growing on their property. Right. That makes sense. Speaker 2 00:35:22 Here's the problem with that. You can't use it in a structure unless it is graded. It has to have a lumber grade on it. So if you have a inspector that comes in and looks at it and says, where'd you get this six by 12? Or would you get all, you know, if somebody cut down their own forest and wanted to build their house Sure. They don't have any lumber stamps, which is required by code. Right. So, you know, it's strong enough. You're probably pretty sure, but you haven't had a professional grader grade it. Speaker 3 00:35:58 Yeah. Well call the grader, have him come down. I have He'll operate the saw. Speaker 2 00:36:02 I have actually done that. We've actually gotten somebody in touch with somebody that was able to send somebody over and it cost a fortune, but they were able to grade certain pieces of lumber and have it done. Speaker 3 00:36:14 Interesting. So Speaker 2 00:36:15 Just keep that in mind. That Speaker 3 00:36:16 Is interesting. Yeah. I like that. Speaker 2 00:36:18 Salvage wood is the same way. If you're using a hundred year old wood, there might be, you'd have to ask your jurisdiction, but there might be some paths and methods to Speaker 3 00:36:27 Get some Speaker 2 00:36:28 Loopholes. Some loopholes to be able to use it. What's the next one? Speaker 3 00:36:32 Cellulose. Cellulose insulation. Cellulose insulation is like little, I mean, I think of it like little cotton balls of insulation that you, that you blow into the walls and into the Speaker 2 00:36:44 Yeah. But it's made from recycled newspapers. Speaker 3 00:36:46 Yeah. Yes. It's made from recycled newspapers. Speaker 2 00:36:49 Yeah. You know, there's all kinds of, Speaker 3 00:36:51 We don't even use newspapers. I know. When was the last time you saw a Speaker 2 00:36:54 Newspaper? I don't even know. Um, but there's all kinds of energy efficient and renewable resource type insulation. Um, you can even get like wool. I've seen recycled denim, all kinds of weird stuff. Speaker 3 00:37:10 So I saw some people using sheeps wool to insulate the walls in their home actually. Yeah. Yeah. Then they sheared the sheeps that they sheeps, they sheared the sheep that they had on the property. Speaker 2 00:37:22 Crazy. Speaker 3 00:37:23 That is wild <laugh>. And very, it's a great, you know, it's a great conversation for the coffee table. Speaker 2 00:37:29 Was there, I wonder if their house was cozy, warm and cozy. Mm-hmm. Like a Speaker 3 00:37:33 Wool blanket. Like a wool blanket. <laugh>. Speaker 2 00:37:37 Um, alright, next one is in, you know, sustainable building materials. Like we all know trucks, decking trucks. Decking is made with like 98% or 99% recycled plastic bags. That's right. So every time you go to the grocery store, take your old plastic bags with you or film all plastic film. And most grocery stores, when you go, they'll have a little container that you can shove 'em in. That's right. Those go back to the Trex factory. Yeah. They melt 'em up and then put 'em with wood fiber, which is also recycled from cabinets and different places that ma manufacture wood products and they pump it out. So that's a very, very green product. Yeah, Speaker 3 00:38:18 Absolutely it is. And then engineered wood, engineered wood products like I joist and, um, paras and, and other kinds of, or oriented strand board, which is made out of, um, portions of wood. Right. Chips and, and uh, chunks of wood. Speaker 2 00:38:38 Yeah. You look back a hundred years ago, and you could get solid pieces of wood to frame houses with that were really strong mm-hmm. <affirmative> over the years, that same wood, the way that they've, I won't say engineered trees because they didn't engineer them, they just took the trees. They replant the trees that grow the fastest. So by doing that, over the years, the growth rings on trees have become gigantic because they've selectively picked the trees with the fastest growing genetics. Right, right. So when you look at that lumber's not as strong as it used to be. That's a fact. And then the other thing is, it's not as big as it used to be. Right. So we have these ever growing houses that have, you know, the open concept, right? You have these big wide open rooms. Well, you need things that will span that far. So engineered wood is perfect. It uses trees that are normally way too small to use for anything else. They chip it up or they shred it up and then they glue it back together and it is a very green thing to do. Yeah. Speaker 3 00:39:53 Yeah. And then, then in the same way that they have the ability to use the fall down, um, from other pieces of wood that are being made Correct as well. Yeah. And so utilizing all of the product and not leaving some of it to end up, up sort of Speaker 2 00:40:10 Rotting. No, Speaker 3 00:40:11 <laugh>. I was gonna Speaker 2 00:40:12 Say swirling in a toilet. What are you doing Speaker 3 00:40:15 <laugh>? I was gonna say, you know, um, just lay it around a bush, you know, and used as a Oh, mulch as, yeah. Mulch, Speaker 2 00:40:22 Bark mulch. Speaker 3 00:40:23 There you go. I was getting there with this, this little thing I was doing. Speaker 2 00:40:26 Bark, bark mulch. I get it now. Yeah. Sprinkle, sprinkle. Speaker 3 00:40:30 So what's next on the list? Speaker 2 00:40:32 All right. Next one on the list would be to talk about your H V A C system. Wow. Speaker 3 00:40:36 We are not H V A C, um, Speaker 2 00:40:39 Experts. No. Speaker 3 00:40:41 A little bit. But we do live in homes that are heated by one. Correct. That makes us partial experts. Speaker 2 00:40:47 Well, when you're, when you're building a new home, you'll see this a lot with track homes, let's just say, or homes that, I won't say track homes actually, because track homes are typically engineered and designed to be the most efficient, which means that they're gonna put in the smallest furnace that they could possibly put in, which is what you want. If you oversize a system, you're wasting energy. So you wanna size the system correctly. It should be sized appropriately for the space that you're heating and cooling. If you oversight it, it's gonna be less efficient and it's gonna result in a short cycle on your, on your unit. Mm. So it makes a lot of sense to actually have someone in the, there's calculations they can do, which they'll have to come out and do a blower door test and a duct blaster test to make sure that your home is, um, Speaker 3 00:41:42 Sealed up Speaker 2 00:41:42 Tightly, sealed tight or not, and ventilated. Right. Right. And the duct work doesn't leak. You'll see a lot of times your furnaces out in your garage and then you have all that duct work go down into your crawl space, you know, like a spider go out all over Speaker 3 00:41:56 Your home and then nobody ever sees it again. Speaker 2 00:41:57 Right. But the problem is, like in my home, all that stuff over the years fell apart rotted, and I was heating the world, so Speaker 3 00:42:06 You we're definitely heating the mud that was under Speaker 2 00:42:08 Your house. Oh Speaker 3 00:42:09 Man. Awful <laugh>. Speaker 2 00:42:10 So you, you want to have a system that is energy efficient and air sealed. So having a company come out and do an actual sizing, if they just come out and measure square footage on your house, that's not enough. Right. They have to do a lot of different things. So take the time is definitely what you want to do. And the same thing goes for the duct work when they're, when you're building a new home, you want to, you wanna make sure that the person or the company that's doing the H V A C is designing the duct work to be most efficient, not necessarily the cheapest or the easiest. Right. Right. Right, right. It's all, it's all goes hand in hand. Speaker 3 00:42:52 Absolutely. We talked a little bit about the SR um, rating, and I don't, I, I know that that's how the H V A C manufacturers rate the Right, the performance of their product, Speaker 2 00:43:09 The seasonal energy efficient ratio. Speaker 3 00:43:11 And they do that so that we don't have to try to do all of that genius, you know, genius math. Right. Um, so just look for a c r rating that is, um, 14 or higher. Yeah. And that, that's, that's something to just keep in Speaker 2 00:43:26 Mind there. That's the d direct relationship of efficiency that you want. Uh, another one when you're doing your H V A C pro programmable thermostat, we already talked about that a little bit. Yeah. Yep. Um, make sure you have good air filtration. If you have the opportunity when you're building a new home to install an air filter, definitely do it. You know, Tony and I lived through, we had that, those awful fires near our homes a few years back. And the air in our homes, the air quality outside was horrible, but inside of our homes, it wasn't great. So we were able to, you know, use, I was able to utilize an air filter that I had, but if you can get one installed directly with your system Yeah. It's gonna reduce the, you know, the dander and all that stuff that you're allergic to. So you wanna get something with a high Merv M E R V, minimum efficiency reporting value. It's very scientific. Yeah. Speaker 3 00:44:23 Yeah. It is <laugh>, it kind of takes me, it makes me, um, it takes me right to, to, uh, an, a heat recovery ventilator. This is something that's not standard in homes today. Right. Uh, we feel of course, that it should be. A lot of people feel like it should be, but it's not. It's an added expense. But what it does is exactly the thing that Corey and I talk about all the time. We talk about, um, you know, the old timers say that a house needs to breathe, and they're absolutely right about that. But we don't want it breathing under the door around the windows through the crawl space. That's not where we want it breathing. Right. We want it to be built tight and ventilated. Right. And that you can ventilate it using an H R V A heat recovery ventilator, which intentionally brings fresh air into the home on a regular basis. Speaker 3 00:45:12 Um, but when it brings it in, it acclimate it to the temperature of your home so that it's sending air in that's already the same temperature as the air that's in the home. Right. But it's fresh air and then it's taking the old air out of the house and, you know, so replacing it with fresh, replacing it with fresh air. So changing your air intentionally in that way. Uh, if, if, if you do, if you don't know a lot about that and it, it intrigues you, or you're gonna be making a change with your H V A C system, look into an H R V or an E R V and E R V is the same thing, but it also removes moisture from the air if you're in an area that you have high moisture and you wanna get that outta here. Speaker 2 00:45:52 Yeah. It just depends. And the best thing to do is to talk to your H V A C contractor that knows about those things. Speaker 3 00:45:58 Right? Yes. Absolutely. Speaker 2 00:45:59 Um, or you can research it yourself, but if you'll know you want one, if you walk into your teenager's bedroom and it smells like a locker room, Speaker 3 00:46:06 <laugh>. Yeah. We know. We actually know of a really good H V A C contractor. The name of the company is Caliber. Are you familiar with Speaker 2 00:46:14 Oh yeah. Caliber. Caliber. Caliber Mechanical. Speaker 3 00:46:16 C A L I B E R. Caliber Mechanical in the Pacific Northwest area. The Portland metro area. Yeah. I'll tell you what, the, that company, those guys do a great job and, uh, hardworking bunch of guys. Yeah. Speaker 2 00:46:30 If you call 'em ask, uh, tell 'em You heard you heard about 'em on the weekend. Warriors. They're good friends of ours. <laugh>. Yeah. They will be shocked cuz they don't pay us. Yeah. <laugh>. Maybe they will. Speaker 3 00:46:41 Maybe. Um, so this is another one that intrigues me. You actually had a mini split, um, installed in your home. This is a, well, talk to me about the mini split that you had installed in the spare bedroom up or the bonus room upstairs. Speaker 2 00:46:56 Yeah, so first of all, what, what I wrote down on the list is to consider installing mini splits around your home. Instead of using a one, a big central air system. A mini split is essentially a very small heat pump. And you can run, you could put one in every room if you wanted to. They have multi-head units, uh, that run back to a heat pump and then you can heat or cool that specific room as you like, not just, you know, part of the main system that runs and heats or cools your whole house. Right. So if you don't use bedrooms, you don't. Tony and I got in trouble. You remember this years back, we were talking about energy efficiency and we said to, if you're not using a room to close it off Yeah. Seal it up. Yeah. You know, seal up the register, the heat register. That is actually terrible. You don't wanna do that. It sounds like it's a good idea. Right. It sounds like if you're not using that room, you close it off while that heat's gonna go somewhere else. But that's not the case when you're doing Speaker 3 00:48:02 Well, technically is still true. Well, right. If you close it, the heat will not go into that room. That's true. But Correct. But the problem is that it's not solving the problem you're trying to solve, which is using less energy. Right. You're the only reason you would do that is to use less energy. Speaker 2 00:48:17 You're creating a situation where you're making the furnace work harder, which will reduce its lifespan by a lot. So when we were talking about that, Tony actually has in his home, you don't have a central air system, you have cadet heaters. Correct. Yeah. So for you, that actually does make sense. Space Speaker 3 00:48:36 Heating. Speaker 2 00:48:36 Yeah. You can do that. And you could do that with a minis split system. So if you just installed mini splits all over your house, it's basically on demand, heat and cold in that particular room. So it's something to consider. You see it a lot over in Europe. You see these big units or these little units on the side of the, on the wall up high. That's a minis split. Yeah. So, alright, let's talk about windows. Tony. Yes. This is your favorite topic. You Speaker 3 00:49:03 Know, we, I do like Speaker 2 00:49:03 Windows. We brought it up earlier. You know, installing high efficiency windows into your home, it's a must. We talked about having a low U factor U value. You want it less than 0.3. That's kind of like the where you want to be these days, Speaker 3 00:49:19 Right? That's right. Actually, I mean, they're getting down to where it's gonna be below two. Wow. Yeah. I mean it's uh, it's changing. It's changing fast technology. Speaker 2 00:49:29 How old the world could you get below 2.2? That's crazy. Speaker 3 00:49:32 Oh, they get it down there. Speaker 2 00:49:34 Um, the next one, you know, consider when you're talking about windows, there's the importance of it is the solar heat gain coefficient, which is the s h gc. You. What that does is that measures how much solar radiation passes through the window. And again, you know that because if you have south facing windows and your blinds are up and it's summertime and all of a sudden it's a hundred degrees in your room. Right. That's why it's because your windows have a very low solar heat gain coefficient or high, and it's letting too much of that in. Right. We talked about low e coatings. Low E means what does the E mean? Tony e Speaker 3 00:50:13 Emissivity. Emissivity, which seems like a big word, but the root word of emissivity is just emit So low emission, low emit, low emitting. Speaker 2 00:50:24 Yeah. What that does, it's a coating that reduces the, the heat and the, the radiation, the UV radiation from coming through Right. While still allowing light. Right. Speaker 3 00:50:36 Which is, that's absolutely right. Speaker 2 00:50:37 Uh, you wanna look at the frame of the windows. There are like if you have old windows in your home that are old aluminum windows, you know that those are terrible insulators. Right. You know, you'll see in the wintertime they'll start growing frost. Yeah. That's Speaker 3 00:50:54 Because plus they're not thermally broken. Right. So they'll sweat on the inside. Correct. Speaker 2 00:50:59 Newer windows, like Tony said, thermal, they're thermally broke, which means they'll have some sort of material between the outside aluminum and the inside aluminum that prevents that heat from, or cold from transferring through the window frame. That's right. That's right. So that's, that's an important thing. Yeah. Fiberglass and wood, vinyl, those are all very good at low thermal. Speaker 3 00:51:23 Yeah. Heat. Absolutely. Uh, it's fiberglass really is, um, is amazing. Wood of course, has in it has its inherent problems because it's wood. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and it's because it's, um, yeah. It's supple kind of in co comparison to, um, fiberglass or metal. Right. Fiberglass is a substrate. Nothing can soak into it at all. Um, I don't know, supple is not the right word. <laugh> Speaker 2 00:51:49 Soft, Speaker 3 00:51:50 But it's not, if it's hardwood, it's not soft necessarily, but it is Speaker 2 00:51:54 Susceptible. Maybe Speaker 3 00:51:56 That's the word. It can absorb it. It has the ability to absorb unlike metal or fiberglass. Right. Or even vinyl. Vinyl also does not absorb. Um, but aluminum windows that are, that have a thermal break today actually are very popular and, and not really very inexpensive. Th they can be pretty expensive to get those, but people are buying them because they look like what was there. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> And, um, aesthetics is a very important thing. Um, a lot of times to people, they want to keep that same aesthetic that the house had, so Right. It is available, but, um, fiberglass windows, um, are expensive, but really good and strong frames. Speaker 2 00:52:41 They're probably the best. Would you say that they're the best? Speaker 3 00:52:43 I mean, wood windows really still have, um, the number one prestige mark mm-hmm. Wood windows maybe that are clad, aluminum clad on the outside. Oh yeah. It's the more durable to the weather on the outside. You can get them in multiple colors, but still has that beautiful clear wood finish on the inside. Speaker 2 00:53:03 Hmm. So yeah, like you said, prestigious, not necessarily efficient. Right. Speaker 3 00:53:08 That's true. Speaker 2 00:53:09 All right. Uh, next one on our list is to consider advanced framing techniques. Now, when you're talking about advanced framing techniques as a homeowner, this is something that you would be choosing or or doing. This is, is something that a builder would have to incorporate into the construction of the home that would reduce the heat and cold transfer through the walls. And also maybe even add insulation into the walls. So you, you think about old school houses were built two by four walls. You can only put so much insulation, so much, so much insulation into a two by four wall. So to Speaker 3 00:53:53 And have it performed the way that it's intended to. Speaker 2 00:53:55 Correct. So to meet our value standards, to get that higher, we switched a two by six wall. So that allows us to get a higher r value in the exterior of our, our homes. That's like the blanket, you know, or the coat that you put on your house. All that insulation. It's Speaker 3 00:54:11 Important to note that you, if you get insulation that is an R 21 versus insulation, that's an R 11. Those insulation are made thicker. The thicker the insulation, the more it insulates. Right. But if you take an R 21 Speaker 2 00:54:28 And cram into an R 11 Speaker 3 00:54:30 Spot and you into an R 11 spot, it's going to perform like R 11. Um, squeezing it and mashing it into a spot is only going to make it perform as good as it can in that small Speaker 2 00:54:40 Space. Right. It doesn't help you. Speaker 3 00:54:41 It requires the space, the fully open space in order to do what you want it to do. Speaker 2 00:54:47 Right. So one thing to consider is when you're talking about framing, is like we've said this word a few times, thermal break. Now, R wood, just lumber has an r value of about one r per inch. Right. So a two by six that's in your wall has a value of about R six, and then the big gap between it Speaker 3 00:55:12 Are Speaker 2 00:55:13 21 filled with installations, R 21, and then the next stud R six. So when you take a thermal camera mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and you shine it on a house in the middle of wintertime, you can see every single stud Speaker 3 00:55:28 <laugh> because they're colder. Speaker 2 00:55:30 Yeah. Correct. Yeah. So what you're doing is, that's called a, a, the thermal Speaker 3 00:55:36 Transfer. I guess technically they, they're warmer in this instance if it's warm in the house. Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. And they're transferring the heat. If you are standing outside on a cold winter morning and you're looking at the outside of a house, you will notice that the frost on the outside of the house is just melted where the studs are. Yeah. Because the heat from the inside of the house is being transferred out. You're losing it through the studs because mm-hmm. <affirmative>, because there only R six instead of R Speaker 2 00:56:00 21. So consider that. Now think about all of the framing that goes into the exterior of your home to make it both structural strong. You want it strong, but you also want a high R value. So to do that, you would either have to remove framing, which you can do when you work directly with an architect or an engineer. You can, you know, eliminate what they call unnecessary framing at, you know, jack studs or crippler studs. Or sometimes you'll see triple or quadruple studs in a wall, and all that's doing is, you know, you're taking six inches of width in a wall and you're making it R six, right. Instead of R 21. Right. So there's ways to design homes that use this, you know, that eliminate this thermal bridging is what they call it. And one of those, another one of those situations would be for headers. A header goes over your window or your door, and it's a big chunk of wood, Speaker 3 00:56:59 And it carries the weight that would otherwise be pushing down into that opening. Correct. All the weight that's up above it, so it has to be beefy. Speaker 2 00:57:07 That's correct. So you have a, a, what's called a header. Now you can get what they call insulated headers, which basically you take a piece of wood that's strong enough to hold a window, or the, the whatever's coming on down over that window or that door, that opening, and you're sandwiching it with foam rigid foam insulation. Now, what you're doing by insulating those headers inside and out is creating that thermal break. Thermal break, so it, it won't pass through the heat and the cold won't pass through that piece of wood as easily as it would if it was just solid wood. Right. So hopefully that makes sense. It's something to consider when you're building a new home. Another one is at a corner where you come into a corner of a house, usually olden days you would see just tons of wood there. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> right. Speaker 2 00:58:02 2, 3, 4 studs, or you would see a, a six by six post or something like that just to have framing in the corner. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that's solid. Right. The problem with that, now it's solid wood, or if you've created a, a corner that's dead. So now that you can get, now they, they recommend building it in a way that you can get insulation inside of that corner. So that's more for the builder. But if you're a homeowner looking to get an energy efficient, home built might be something to talk to 'em about. Yep. Advanced framing techniques. Yep. Another one is to use sheathing on the exterior house use foam. You can, you can, if you have your home properly engineered, you can use foam instead of OSB or plywood in certain areas. Speaker 3 00:58:54 Well, OSB or plywood oftentimes provides sheer wall, correct. Uh, shear ratings in the places where it's used. So if you've, if you've ga gained your sheer in the wall from another way, then you could have foam insulation on the exterior of the wall. Speaker 2 00:59:11 Correct. Creating a, creating Speaker 3 00:59:13 Thermal break, a thermal break between the siding and the studs. Keeping that heat from transferring from inside the house to outside Speaker 2 00:59:19 The house. Right. Another way to do do it too is to shea the entire exterior of your home on top of the plywood with foam. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that's another building technique that you're creating a thermal break, creating a nice warm blanket on the outside. So that cold air is never really touching the wood that has a very low R value. Speaker 3 00:59:38 Right. So interesting. Very interesting. I Speaker 2 00:59:40 See. The last one in advanced framing techniques is what's called a raised heel. Now it sounds silly, is Speaker 3 00:59:47 That like a high heel Speaker 2 00:59:48 <laugh> kind of <laugh>, but if you consider a roof truss shape like a triangle, right. And at the exterior of your wall, the top plate where it meets the wall trusses come down in the very skinniest part of that triangle is two by four. You know, tru trusses are usually made with the two by four Right. Top cord, two by four bottom cord. Yep. You know, even if you had a two by six bottom cord, what you're doing is as that insulation in your attic, which you want approximately, what? 20 inches? I think that's what it's up to now. They R 38 is Speaker 3 01:00:26 What you want. Speaker 2 01:00:26 Yeah. R might even be higher now. Speaker 3 01:00:28 R 40 something now. Speaker 2 01:00:29 So you want that really thick insulation, and like Tony said earlier, the thinner insulation gets the less work it's doing, the Speaker 3 01:00:38 Squier down it gets, Speaker 2 01:00:40 So if you think about that, when you're shoving it down into the corner, corner of a triangle, what's happening Yeah. It's you're losing our value, you're Speaker 3 01:00:48 Losing performance Speaker 2 01:00:49 At the entire perimeter of your home. Right. So what they've done is they've created what's called a raised heel trust, where you're adding framing down there to basically raise that triangle so it's squared Speaker 3 01:01:03 Off to separate the top Speaker 2 01:01:05 Member from the bottom, from Speaker 3 01:01:06 The bottom member with, uh, that, with that Speaker 2 01:01:08 Vertical Correct. Speaker 3 01:01:10 Creating space for you to fit your insulation in there. Absolutely. So you absolutely can be properly Speaker 2 01:01:14 Insulated so you have, you know, whatever it is, R 38 or R 40, whatever it is now, all the way to the edge of your home. Yeah. Speaker 3 01:01:22 Very smart. So very Speaker 2 01:01:24 Smart. You need that. It, yeah. I don't know why it took so long to make that a big deal, but everybody's doing it now, so it's good. Yeah. Uh, last one on the list, Tony. Oh, it's not the last one on the list. We have two more items, <laugh>, we're gonna rip through these real quick. Okay. This show's getting long, um, VOCs VOCs stand for Volatile Organic Compounds. And if you can try to buy products that are limited in those VOCs, Speaker 3 01:01:53 You find VOCs in paint in, um, adhesives. In sealant, like, Speaker 2 01:01:59 Um, caulking. Speaker 3 01:02:00 Caulking. Yeah. Uh, and here's what happens. You, it, it's inside there and it does whatever job that it does inside there, and then you, you utilize it. Like let's say you Speaker 2 01:02:11 Are in the can, you mean Speaker 3 01:02:12 Yeah. Inside the, or the tube, or how about this, we'll call it inside of a tube of cu and you run that bead of ca a quarter inch bead, um, on your siding between your siding and your, and Speaker 2 01:02:25 Your window. Speaker 3 01:02:26 Window or your trim trim, and you run that quarter inch bead and it goes on there and it covers it exactly what it's supposed to do. As those VOCs off gas from that bead of caulk that you put on the outside of the house, that caulking shrinks and shrinks and shrinks down. And as it shrinks down, it pulls apart and it separates and it creates all kinds of problems. VOCs don't remain inside of the product that they're put in. Right. They off gas, they leave. Yeah. And when they off gas, it's not good for anything. It's not good for anyone. And Speaker 2 01:03:01 So Yeah. When it's inside your home, right, like Tony said, any compound has solids and you know, um, gas, you know the gas that's in there, right? Solvents, there's solvents and solids. So they put those together to make a product pliable. You know, that's why paint when it hardens, the reason it hardens is because the solvents evaporate away leaving the solids. Speaker 3 01:03:25 Right. Speaker 2 01:03:25 Exactly. So that's how that works. The same thing with caulking. So do you wanna breathe all those solvents in as that stuff dries over years and years and years? Don't Speaker 3 01:03:34 Answer that. You don't. Speaker 2 01:03:35 You don't. So using products with low v VOC is good for the environment and it's good for your, your health. Speaker 3 01:03:43 Yeah. Agreed. Speaker 2 01:03:44 Uh, the last thing, Tony, last thing on our list, and I know we've beat this one to death, but smart home technology. Yeah. Smart thermostats. I'm gonna leave that alone. <laugh> talked about that earlier. <laugh>. Uh, but there are other things you can do. I have a whole smart home that I've talked about on this, how on this show tons of times. Uh, but you can install energy monitoring systems that tell you how much energy you're using. Yeah. And you can identify, Speaker 3 01:04:10 You can buy a smart, um, surge protector. I would call it a surge protector or a power strip, which is something that multiple, uh, appliances or things would plug into. Sure. And you could buy one that will tell you about your energy consumption. You know, it's, it's varies. It's, it's information that you would not otherwise have and why wouldn't you want it? Speaker 2 01:04:32 Right. And it, you know, allows you to say, I'm gonna turn off the tv. You know, the, all of these appliances that you have on inside your home, they're an energy drain all the time. They're just trickling energy. You know, you could turn everything off in your house in a, your home will still be drawing energy until you unplug it. Speaker 3 01:04:50 So I know some people that are energy drains, <laugh>, Speaker 2 01:04:53 I do too. Speaker 3 01:04:54 <laugh>. Speaker 2 01:04:56 Uh, but anyway, smart lighting, that's another one we've talked about many times. You can, you know, program it to turn off so that you don't, aren't leaving lights on all day or all night, you know, they automatically turn off or you can use the, you know, to dim your lighting, which will reduce the energy that you're using. Yeah. Smart appliances are the same thing. You know, there, there's all kinds of different ways that they monitor energy and make your, say your refrigerator more efficient. So probably the last one, solar panels. Speaker 3 01:05:28 Yeah. Solar panels. I mean, n nobody knows more about how solar panels can benefit your bottom line. Then Cory Valdez Speaker 2 01:05:37 <laugh>. I did get solar panels installed in my home. Yeah. And my energy bill went from it. It was, it went the very first month that I had 'em up. My energy bill was like, you know, $180 or something. And then the very first month, my first bill was $7 <laugh>. Speaker 3 01:05:54 Yeah. Yeah. Speaker 2 01:05:55 So Speaker 3 01:05:55 It's very cool. Yeah, it's very cool. Absolutely. Uh, I mean, it's not, it's not a thing that's inexpensive, but it's a thing that's obviously amazing and it doesn't matter where you see it. You're driving on a road to burns and remotely. You come across in the middle of nowhere, a blinking yellow light. And as you approach the blinking yellow light that's on top of a sign that says beware abrupt edge, you see right on top of that little light, this is a little solar panel Speaker 2 01:06:26 <laugh>. I was like, where are you going with this? Speaker 3 01:06:27 And that light will just blink and blink and blink, and blink as long as the sun is coming up. There you go. You know, it's just amazing in as simplest fashion, it's amazing what solar panels can do for us. Yep. And so, um, it's something to look Speaker 2 01:06:43 At. Cool. Well, there you go. Hopefully we gave you some, uh, something to think about for your own home, or if you're building a new home Speaker 4 01:06:49 Or if you're a contractor. Uh, if you wanna check us out, you can make sure you, uh, hit subscribe down below and, uh, follow us on our shows. You can get the, uh, a little, what is it? That's a notifications. Yeah. So every time we drop an episode you can listen. Yeah. Go check out our YouTube channel and, uh, Tony and I are putting up videos all the time, so we really appreciate you, us there, or Instagram. We're at WW Home Show. Speaker 2 01:07:13 Thanks so much for listening. We'll catch you next week.

Other Episodes

Episode 605

August 19, 2023 00:27:02
Episode Cover

Weyerhaeuser Trus Joist

Tony and Corey visit Prineville Oregon and talk to Mike Bagley with Weyhaeuser to talk about Trus Joist products.  


Episode 512

February 16, 2019 01:35:31
Episode Cover

ADU Expert

On this episode of the Weekend Warriors Home Improvement show Tony and Corey have Kol Peterson on the show.  He's an ADU expert from...


Episode 552

February 22, 2020 01:19:38
Episode Cover

Mountainwood Homes

Tony and Corey talk to Robert Wood from Mountainwood Homes, a local remodeling contractor in the Portland Metro area. We talk about design, architecture...